Juvenile delinquency is an act wherein a minor commits a crime or involves themselves in any immoral or anti social activities. Such minors are called juveniles or juvenile delinquents. This term not only involves legal facts but it also involves moral,social as well psychological issues. Juvenile detention centers and courts etc are included in the juvenile legal system. With the help of data and statistics it is clearly portrayed that the rate of crimes committed by minors is increasing at a sharp rate so it becomes important to understand the causes and prevention of juvenile delinquency.
Causes of juvenile delinquency:
A behavioural study conducted by psychologists on juveniles tells that minors commit crimes because their mind tells them to do so and in doing that they feel satisfied and contented.
Another factor leading to minor crimes is a dysfunctional family. As it is known that family plays the greatest role in anyone’s life and it not only affects how people behave in society but it also determines how people view and analyse life. In some cases children feel neglected when they have working parents and this isolation leads them into doing wrongful acts. Sometimes families collectively fail in passing on the values,ethics and morals of life to their kids making them hostile and toxic. Sometimes being in bad company or being in touch with inappropriate people also leads to juvenile delinquency. For example,being in touch with smugglers motivates kids to commit such crimes. Unnecessary ostracism is also contributing in juvenile crimes. For instance when a child is ridiculed for belonging to a particular or so called community,they might start feeling criminal instincts in them. And apart from all these things the major factor promoting juvenile delinquency in wide spread poverty,income gap and economic inequality. When a economically poor child commits a crime like theft for the first time there is a moral element involved in the act, he knows it’s wrong and might as well promises himself not to do such thing again but the next day also,he has to fight for survival so he chooses the easier path and slowly and gradually it becomes his habit and his system gets conditioned to it. Mental health and psychological factors also affect the rates of juvenile delinquency.
Prevention of juvenile delinquency:-Education is the major prevention mechanism of juvenile delinquency. There are various programs which teach children about the ills of drugs,gangs,weapons etc. There various programs focusing the needs of parents educating them how to raise children,how to provide healthy space to them etc. Education provides an opportunity to people of all age to open up. Recreational activities also surprisingly prevent juvenile crimes. These activities build up stronger communities and they spread positive and optimistic thoughts in children’s lives. These actives may include singing,dancing,acting etc. Various socially concerned organizations carry out parent-child interaction training programs,the objective of these programs is to provide a safe and desirable space to parent and children so that they can work things out. Prevention of ruthless bullying and making children feel safe is also a good way to reducing crimes committed by children. Apart from these,the legal systems of various countries are trying to deal with the problem of juvenile delinquency.
Although it is true that minors must be given a second chance but if not handled carefully and intricately, juvenile delinquency can become humanity’s worst nightmare.